Sunday, October 9, 2011

Knee and Schlumpf Issues

EDIT 2012-07-06:
I stumbled across this post and thought I'd mention I haven't had any further issues with my Schlumpf hub.  I think the noise/vibration I perceived in the bearings wasn't anything.  Maybe a bearing holder was on too tight?  In any case, I have had no problems since originally reporting this.

I hadn't ridden since the Albany race two weeks ago.  I wanted to rest my knee/IT band and have been doing a small amount of daily exercising and stretching to hopefully make it better.  Plus the weather had been colder and uninviting lately.

But this weekend we've had temperatures in the 60's and 70's, so it was time to get out.  I rode at Whiting and Webster this morning.

Unfortunately my left knee started bothering me around the 5 mile mark, as usual.  So my ride was shorter than I like, at just under 8 miles.  I did manage some good climbs, though gave up after four tries on my relatively new nemesis hill on the Red trail at Whiting.  Last time I was able to climb it, but it wasn't in the cards today.  Same with one hill in Webster Park.

The leaves are now falling and the trails are covered.  It can be a bit nerve racking riding fast and not being able to see the hidden roots.  But none got me this time.

At some point during my ride I must have been off my uni and spun my wheel to position my pedals to mount.  The spinning wheel didn't feel completely smooth.  I think I could feel some vibration through my frame and seat and into my hands.  It looks like my Schlumpf geared hub is acting up.  I think the bearings are no longer spinning smoothly and it looks like more grease is leaking out than normal.  Usually it just looks shiny near the seals, but I actually see some grease. This sucks.  The hub has a 5 year warranty and it will likely need to be sent back to Switzerland.  The turn around for this kind of thing can be months.
The good news is, I have my original 24" wheel ready to go for just such a problem.  So I won't be completely out of commission, just without my high gear.  Plus, if I have to send it back, doing so as we get into the winter months is probably the best time.
The other bad news is I'll have to remove the hub from my wheel in order to send it back, but the possibly good news is that I have been thinking about getting a 29'er.  If I do, then I may have been moving my geared hub into a new wheel anyway.
I'll have to investigate the problem closer before I pursue the warranty fix.

Muni at Whiting and Webster Park - 2011-10-09

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